Throughout the US, in states were medical marijuana is legal; there are cooperatives amongst patients and caregivers which are not attractive to law enforcement or noticeable to the public-at-large.
Colorado’s amendment 20 was written at a time when cannabis clubs existed in California, Canada, and Europe. They were envisioned for Colorado, and had been discussed since the mid 90s when the Hemp Act was taken to the ballot.
Coloradoans who farm and ranch are quite familiar with agricultural cooperatives. They are non-profits designed to support agricultural business, which tends to be families, in communities. While there are very large co-ops across the US, it is the members who benefit from the services. Co-ops may be designed in a number of ways, but to simplify for this example: Cannabis patients and caregivers could create a local co-op in which membership is by investment of capital, equity, or real estate for a specific known value of percentage. Marijuana is locally grown by the members and consumed only by the members. Knowledge transfer and skills are developed within the co-op, which benefits as a whole. Quality is a self contained issue.
Co-ops exist in Colorado now and have for a while. Since they don’t sell or buy marijuana, they are not attractive to law enforcement. But if noticed, they’d be perfectly legal. No drugs are sold, everyone in possession is a certified patient.
Unfortunately, municipalities may have difficulty in taxing a co-op. Most home rule towns exempt farms from certain use and energy taxes, and making a change in dealing with co-ops to seek marijuana taxes will create a negative fervor with farmers and ranchers.
If you’re a serious patient or caregiver, take a serious step towards your own health and overall well being. Start an MMJ co-op.